The Freedom of Nothing

“Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose.”
-Kris Kristofferson

Preacher’s kid.
No freedom at all.
Every minute accounted for.
Every action observed and judged.

You don’t think about it too much
when you’re ten
and a boy. But somewhere along the way
to adulthood,
everything changes.

You resent the prying eyes,
the sinners who expect you to be a saint.
It was worse for my sisters,
but girls are strong as steel.
They each found different paths out.
One married a preacher
(out of the frying pan into the fire).
One finds solace in wine.
One broke the shackles of organized religion,
and found god in her garden.

Me, I still believe,
but prayer is an open road.
I can sleep in an alley
as easily as I can a bed. Find a willing lover
when it gets too hot or too cold.
Leave when spring warms the ground,
when fall cools the air.

Work when I can.
Find free stuff when I can’t.
Nothing to lose but my freedom,
and when the turn comes, I’ll consider heaven
if the rules aren’t too tight.

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